Sourdough Banana Bars

Published: May 18, 2023 • Last Updated: May 18, 2023
Author: Laura
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sourdough banana bars

Banana Bars are a delicious and classic baked treat that is loved by many. The bread is made with ripe bananas, creating a moist and dense texture. It can be enjoyed for breakfast or as a snack throughout the day. It’s an easy recipe to make, requiring only a few simple ingredients. Some variations include adding nuts, chocolate chips, or even cinnamon.

One of the great things about banana bars are its versatility; it can be enjoyed warm out of the oven or toasted with a spread of butter. Anything made out of bananas is a timeless favorite that brings comfort and joy to the table. Have you tried my Best Sourdough Sandwich Bread Recipe?

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  1. Moist and Delicious: Banana bars are moist and packed with flavor, making them a satisfying treat for any time of the day. The ripe bananas used in the recipe provide a natural sweetness and a moist texture that melts in your mouth.
  2. Easy to Make: Banana bars are easy to make, requiring only a few staple ingredients. They can be whipped up quickly, making them a great option for busy weeknights or last-minute get-togethers.
  3. Versatile: Banana bars can be enjoyed in various ways. They can be served plain or topped with cream cheese frosting or a dusting of powdered sugar. You can also add chopped nuts or chocolate chips to the batter to create different variations and flavors.

Ingredients Needed to Make Banana Bars

  • Ripe bananas are mashed and added to the batter, providing natural sweetness and a moist texture that makes the recipe a hit.
  • Milk is added to the batter to create a smooth consistency and to balance out the sweetness of the bananas.
  • The active starter adds a tangy flavor to the batter and helps to give the finished product a light and airy texture.
  • Lemon juice is added to the batter to aid in activating the baking soda and to balance out the acidity of the starter.
  • Sugar is added to the batter to enhance the sweetness and flavor of the ripe bananas.
  • Butter is added to the batter to provide richness and to help bind the other ingredients together.
  • Vanilla extract is added to the batter to add depth of flavor and aroma to the recipe.
  • Eggs are used to provide structure and stability to the batter, helping to create a light and fluffy texture when baked.
  • Baking powder is added to the batter to help the bars rise and to create a tender crumb.
  • Baking soda is added to the batter to neutralize the acidity of the starter and to help the bars rise.
  • Flour is added to the batter to create structure and to help the bars hold their shape when baked.

What are the ingredients for the cream cheese frosting?

  • Butter is used in this recipe to add richness and creaminess to the frosting, as well as to help it hold its shape.
  • Cream cheese is the key ingredient in this frosting, providing tanginess and a smooth texture that pairs well with the sweetness of the maple syrup.
  • Maple syrup is used as a natural sweetener in this recipe, adding depth of flavor and complexity to the frosting.
  • A pinch of sea salt is added to the frosting to balance out the sweetness and enhance the flavors of the other ingredients.

FAQs for Making These Bars

How do I make my banana bars more moist?

Adding an extra tablespoon or two of milk or sour cream to the batter can help make your banana bars more moist and tender.

Can I use whole wheat flour instead of all-purpose flour?

Yes, you can use whole wheat flour instead of all-purpose flour, but keep in mind that the texture and flavor of the banana bars may be slightly different.

How should I store my banana bars?

Banana bars can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days, or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. For longer storage, you can freeze them for up to 3 months.

Can I substitute the butter with oil?

Yes, you can substitute the softened butter with an equal amount of avocado oil or coconut oil. Keep in mind that this may change the flavor and texture of the banana bars slightly.

Can I make banana bars without eggs?

Yes, you can substitute the eggs with an egg substitute such as applesauce, chia or flax “egg”, or yogurt. Keep in mind that this may change the texture and flavor of the banana bars slightly.

Can I add nuts or chocolate chips to the batter?

Yes, you can add chopped nuts, chocolate chips, or other mix-ins to the batter to create different variations and flavors of banana bars.

Topping Ideas

  • Cream cheese frosting (see recipe below)
  • Whipped cream
  • Caramel sauce
  • Chocolate ganache
  • Chopped nuts (walnuts, pecans, almonds)
  • Shredded coconut
  • Fresh berries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries)
  • Sliced bananas
  • Powdered sugar
  • Honey drizzle

Can I freeze this recipe?

  • Allow the banana bars to cool completely before freezing. This will prevent condensation from forming on the surface and making the bars soggy.
  • Cut the bars into individual portions before placing them in the freezer. This will make it easier to thaw only what you need, without having to defrost the entire batch.
  • Wrap each bar tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil to prevent freezer burn and to keep the bars fresh.
  • Place the wrapped bars in a freezer-safe bag or container, and label it with the date and contents.
  • When ready to eat, remove the desired number of bars from the freezer and allow them to thaw at room temperature for about 30 minutes. You can microwave them on a low setting for a few seconds to warm them up.

Looking for more recipes that use an active starter? You can grab my The Sourdough Essentials Digital Cookbook and get access to tons of ideas!

Sourdough Banana Bars

You are going to make the most delicious treat thanks to these Sourdough Banana Bars! They are so easy to make and even more delicious to eat.


  • 2 cups mashed bananas
  • 1/2 cup milk dairy or non-dairy
  • 1 cup active starter
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup softened butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 cups all purpose flour

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 3 tbsp softened butter
  • 8 ounces softened cream cheese
  • 4 tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt


  • Mix mashed bananas, milk, starter, and lemon juice together in a bowl.
  • In another bowl, beat butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add in the vanilla and eggs until well combined.
  • Add the banana mixture and mix until all incorporated.
  • Add the baking powder, baking soda, and then slowly add the flour. Mix until just combined without over-mixing. For a long ferment, cover and put in fridge for 1-3 days.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Pour batter onto an oiled or parchment paper lined baking sheet and bake for 20-30 minutes or until a toothpick comes clean.

To Make Cream Cheese Frosting

  • In a mixer, whisk together butter and cream cheese until smooth. Add the rest of the ingredients and scrape down the bowl, if needed.
  • Beat until light and fluffy. Keep in the refrigerator to firm up. Spread over the banana bars.
  • The recipe can be doubled for a thicker frosting.

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